Monday, 31 March 2014

Reportage: Probation officers strike over privatisation plans

Probation officers in Calderdale will out on strike for a second day today in a dispute over plans to restructure the probation service.

Napo, the Trade Union for Probation and Family Court staff, are in a formal dispute over government plans to privatise 70 per cent of the probation service.

Gavin Lee. senior probation officer at West Yorkshire Probation Trust and member of Napo, said: “I’m striking along with colleagues here at Halifax Probation Centre because I’m very concerned about the risky and unproven rehabilitation agenda the coalition has.

“We already have a working relationship with NHS, social care and children’s services across Calderdale, as well as with charities and private companies - it’s fair to say they’re all concerned about the risks these changes will bring.”

The West Yorkshire Probation Trust supports around 800 people at any one time - 80 per cent of those served live within the community.

Justice Minister Jeremy Wright said: “It is very disappointing that Napo has chosen to strike when we are making positive progress towards the implementation of these vital reforms.”

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